Archive for Saturday, September 23, 2006

Howard tags HR No. 58

September 23, 2006

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— Ryan Howard hit his major-league-leading 58th homer, Cole Hamels pitched 62â3 strong innings, and the Philadelphia Phillies continued their playoff push with a 5-2 victory over the Florida Marlins on Friday night.

Howard moved closer toward becoming the sixth player to ever reach 60 homers when he lined a three-run shot off Ricky Nolasco into the seats in left-center in the third inning.

The Phillies (80-73) entered the night a half-game behind Los Angeles in the NL wild-card standings. Philadelphia is 34-19 since July 29, the day before trading outfielder Bobby Abreu to the New York Yankees as part of a midseason roster purge.

Hamels (9-8) gave up one run and six hits to win for the fifth time in seven decisions.

Dodgers 2, Diamondbacks 0

Los Angeles - Derek Lowe pitched seven sharp innings, J.D. Drew broke a scoreless tie with a leadoff homer in the seventh, and Los Angeles beat Arizona to remain a half-game behind first-place San Diego in the NL West.

Padres 6, Pirates 2

San Diego - Chris Young came within two outs of the first no-hitter in San Diego's 38-season history before allowing pinch-hitter Joe Randa's two-run homer. With the crowd of 40,077 on its feet and cheering every pitch, Randa momentarily silenced Petco Park with a 421-foot shot to straightaway center field. Jose Bautista walked ahead of Randa.

Brewers 13, Giants 12

Milwaukee - Barry Bonds hit his 733rd homer, tying Hank Aaron's NL record, and drove in a season-high six runs, but Milwaukee outslugged San Francisco. David Bell's infield single in the eighth inning drove in the go-ahead run for Milwaukee, which rallied from deficits of 4-0 and 12-10.

Rockies 6, Braves 4

Denver - Todd Helton's two-run double off the wall in the fifth inning sparked Colorado. Josh Fogg (10-9) gave up three earned runs, eight hits and two walks in 62â3 innings.

Nationals 3, Mets 2

New York - Alfonso Soriano became baseball's first 40-40-40 player, and Pedro Astacio turned in a rare strong road start. Soriano hit his 40th double, stole his 41st base and scored a run. With 45 homers, he already was only the fourth major-league player with 40 homers and 40 steals in a season.

Astros 6, Cardinals 5

Houston - Craig Biggio's two-out RBI-single capped Houston's two-run rally in the bottom of the ninth.

Reds 4, Cubs 2, 5 innings, rain

Cincinnati - Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer - one of three off left-hander Rich Hill - and Cincinnati opened its final home series of the season with a rain-shortened win.

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